'Absolute heroes': Retired litter picking couple honoured with award

Freddie and Irene McCormick have been honoured with a Middlesbrough Good Neighbour Award. Pictured from L-R are Cllr Tony Grainge, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Community Safety, Irene and Freddie and Sylvia Ochuba, a Community
Freddie and Irene McCormick have been honoured with a Middlesbrough Good Neighbour Award. Pictured from L-R are Cllr Tony Grainge, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Community Safety, Irene and Freddie and Sylvia Ochuba, a Community

A retired couple who have litter picked more than 4,000 bags of waste have been honoured with a Good Neighbours Award.

Freddie and Irene McCormick have been voluntarily cleaning the Ladgate area of Middlesbrough for about five years.

They head out four or five times a week and have made numerous friends in the area for their efforts.

Freddie, 79, and Irene, 75, have been nominated as Good Neighbours by Middlesbrough Council’s executive member for community safety and Ladgate ward councillor Tony Grainge. The council's Middlesbrough Good Neighbour Award recognises people who make a huge contribution to the lives of many people in the town.

Cllr Grainge said: “They are probably the two most loved people in Ladgate. I dread to think what the area would look like without them and it’s hugely appreciated. They are absolute heroes.”

Irene said: “It’s very nice to be thought of, people give us drinks and we’ve had chocolates and flowers. Everybody is kind.”

Freddie added: “You meet people you have never met before and people say we have made a difference, which is nice.”

Anyone wishing to make a nomination must have permission from the person they are nominating and if they’re under 18, a parent or guardian’s permission will be required.

For further information visit www.middlesbrough.gov.uk/good-neighbour-awards.